Born in Dartford, Kent, England back in 1943, Mick Jagger helped to form The Rolling Stones almost two decades later, in 1962 and became simply one of the most influential vocalists of all time. Besides being known for his incredible songwriting and voice, he also became a great inspiration to artists due to his incredible stage presence and movements during the band’s performances.
In more than six decades on the road with the band, Jagger had the opportunity to see many incredible artists performing live but it was one that was active only for a few years that he said was the best he saw playing live.
The musician that Mick Jagger said was the best he saw live
There are Rock stars who are like shooting stars, they suddenly appear out of nowhere and change the whole scene in a matter of a few years and then in a tragic way exit the stage. One of them was the legendary American guitarist and singer Jimi Hendrix, who Mick Jagger said in an interview with Classic Rock in 2022 that was the best one he saw playing live.
“I loved Jimi Hendrix from the beginning. The moment I saw him, I thought he was fantastic. I was an instant convert. Mr. Jimi Hendrix is the best thing I’ve ever seen. It was exciting, sexy and interesting. He didn’t have a very good voice but made up for it with his guitar,” Mick Jagger said.
Hendrix was only one year older than Jagger, being born in 1942 in Seattle, Washington. He started his musical career in the same year The Rolling Stones were formed. But he was for five years a sideman to many other artists before he decided to create his own group.
His career with The Jimi Hendrix Experience and Band of Gypsys lasted only three years, from 1967 until 1970 when he tragically died at the age of 27. Curiously, the former Rolling Stones guitarist Brian Jones died one year before Hendrix, at the same age.
Jagger said that he was the best and most original guitarist
Jagger talked about Hendrix in an interview for the 1973 documentary about the guitarist. (Transcribed by Rock and Roll Garage) “I didn’t know nothing. I just thought he had just come out of nowhere and we just adopted him. In England, we felt like he was great and he wasn’t big in America.”
“So he came to England and he had his first record in England and he was ours, you know. The opening night was at some terrible discotheque, you know. There were a few people, I went down with Marion and he was just amazing. I mean, he was just amazing, completely.”
“You can say a million things, I just thought that Jimi was a great guitar player. I thought he was the best of the most original and had a really original act. That’s all, man, I don’t know nothing about his business, whether it was a casualty. I wish he was still here,” Mick Jagger said.
Jagger not only had the chance to see Jimi Hendrix playing live but to meet him. The American guitarist became a good friend of most of the famous British artists from that era, from bands like The Beatles, Rolling Stones and The Who.
Mick Jagger already performed Jimi Hendrix’s “Foxy Lady” live
In 1988, Mick Jagger started his solo tour to promote his solo album “Primitive Cool”, which was released one year before. His backing band had the guitarist Joe Satriani and besides Rolling Stones and solo tracks, Jagger also performed some covers. One of them was Jimi Hendrix’s “Foxy Lady”, which appeared on most of the setlists of that tour.
Curiously, there is also footage of Jagger performing that track in 1987 with the late legendary guitarist Jeff Beck, who was also a big fan of Hendrix. Beck appeared on Jagger’s solo album, which was released in that same year, playing lead guitar.
The song was originally released by the American guitarist on The Jimi Hendrix Experience debut album “Are You Experienced” in 1967.